Paxil and Pregnancy

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May234
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Date Joined Dec 2004
Total Posts : 14
   Posted 1/22/2005 4:44 PM (GMT -6)   
Just wondering if anyone out there is taking Paxil while they are pregnant?  Or is there anyone who took Paxil during their pregnancy and the baby had withdrawal symptoms?
 
I'm not sure if enough studies have been done about this subject, but if anyone has any information or can lend some advice, that would be great.
 
Thank you.

astarisborn
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Date Joined May 2004
Total Posts : 100
   Posted 1/22/2005 6:59 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm so glad you asked this question!!!  I don't have the answer, but I'm in the same situation.  I just came off of my birth control to try and become pregnant, but I take 30mg Paxil once a day.  The doctor says I should be ok, but I'd love to hear from someone who has gone through it.  Thanks!!! tongue

Lilly2
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2004
Total Posts : 321
   Posted 1/22/2005 7:36 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi there,

I don't have a answer either, as I made sure I wasn't taking anything when I was pregnant, but I have read a few things about it in the past...one is that it effects a hormone that produces breastmilk. So you might want to check into that if you are planning on breast feeding. I guess, with any medication you have to weigh up the risk compared to the need, so ultimatley its its probably best not to take any medication in the first trimester if you can get by without them.

I don't think they have done a lot of clinical studies involving humans with it, so I personally wouldn't be comfortable with it, then again I wasn't comfortable taking a pain pill for a headache either when i was pregnant.

I have talked to a few people in the past that have been taking paxil when pregnant though, if I remember who they were I will try and ask them for you :)
Maybe ask your doctor if he has treated other people who have had babies on paxil? and see how they are doing.

savarin
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Date Joined Feb 2005
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 2/13/2005 12:18 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi All!

I'm a new member as of today. Regarding Paxil - I took it during my third trimester. However knowing what I know now I probably would have started back on it sooner (like after the 1st trimester) as my pregnancy was a festival of anxiety. I also developed some minor complications early in my second trimester (while I was Paxil free) which gave me further reasons to freak out.

My experience is this, pregnancy can be a time of great apprehension for even calm people - it certainly gives you much to think about in any event! I was convinced I was going to miscarry at any moment (I did not.) I was also convinced I was suffering from heart disease and high blood pressure (I was not) and needlessly obessed about my salt consumption, eating any food that was unsafe, etc. Many nights I did not sleep well. Normal, perfectly fine physical experiences of pregnancy I perceived as ominous. In short I tortured myself when I could have spent this time caring for myself.

I focused exclusively on keeping my fetus drug-free, when in fact the whole time she was probably swimming about in a sea of cortisol (stress-related hormone). I believe we should also consider the birth environment for our children, and I do believe my negative state of mind may have affected my daughter more than any amount of Paxil I might have taken. I finally went to my psychiatrist during my last month of pregnancy and went on 10 mg. Paxil (with the Ob's approval), but I gave birth shortly thereafter and did not really benefit from the medication. It was a long and agonizing session with my psychiatrist about whether to even go on the 10 mg. and I do remember him telling me that there is no perfect pregnancy (which I was attempting to obtain) and that Paxil had a longer track record than most with regards to pregnancy. I believe there is a site which he directed me to which I will attempt to find and post.

In addition, I remember hearing an interview on NPR with a women who was I believe an editor at the Washington Post, who had a long-standing history of anxiety and depression. She went through her first pregnancy unmedicated (torture) and her second medicated (fine).
Her conclusions focused on the temperaments of her two very different daughters. Her first daughter is kinda nervous and high strung while the second is very calm and easy. She attributes it to the possibilty that her mental state played a part. (Of course I can't help throwing in the caveat that all kids will grow to have different personalities beyond our control thanks to genetics, etc.) Should you wonder about my own darling, all I can say is she is an extremely sensitive and was a very easily disturbed baby who had a very low tolerance for noise and transition. Even at 2-1/2 she still intensely dislikes certain noises and too much change - in other words not too mellow! I do know that Paxil passes into breast milk, but at very small doses (not like the child was actually taking it herself for instance) Mothering magazine published a large, well-documented study on various mediations while nursing and concluded that Paxil (and other SSRI's) was OK while nursing. In fact I still nurse my daughter at night before she goes to sleep. We have never perceived any problems.

Finally, it will always be your choice, no matter what you read or hear. Consider it your first difficult decision as a parent - there will be a liketime of them! I guess I did not think of myself as more than a safe vessel for my beautiful child. I did not take into account my own peace of mind and value myself enough to want nine months without torture. I'm sure it can be a really sweet time filled with optimism. After pregancy I went off the minuscule dose and has a very bumpy post partum. I may consider getting pregnant again in the future and after two years of reflection, I wouldn't do it again unmedicated should I be anxious.

Hope this helps! Good luck!

astarisborn
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2004
Total Posts : 100
   Posted 2/13/2005 4:59 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you so much, that was a great post and very helpful!!!

PLR3
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Date Joined Feb 2005
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 2/22/2005 6:35 PM (GMT -6)   

I took paxil during the first half of my first pregnancy, and got off it (against my doctors advice)  The next few months were full of panic attacks and anxiety.  Thered has been a lot of reasearc about the effects of stress hormones on the fetus and a link to developing autism.  For my second pregnancy, I took paxil throughout, and avoided the anxiety and panic attacks altogether.  Both babies turned out fine, and neither had any type of withdrawal.

Good luck!


jgr
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Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 3/3/2005 8:47 PM (GMT -6)   
It's great to hear from other women who have experienced this same situation.  I too am pregnant and on paxil for panic attacks.  I had been on paxil for almost 2 years when I found out I was pregnant.  I tried to go off of it, and I was a basketcase.  My doctor told me to resume my dosage (20mg) and things would be fine.  As a mother I still worry.  I didn't take or need paxil during my first pregnancy, so this is all new to me too.  I am currently almost 11 weeks pregnant, and hope and pray all will be okay.

astarisborn
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2004
Total Posts : 100
   Posted 3/3/2005 9:03 PM (GMT -6)   
All the best to you and your new baby!

Josee
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Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 3/4/2005 6:37 PM (GMT -6)   
I used to take paxil and would never recommend it to anyone. I have never been pregnant on it either, but I am doing research online for a friend who is about to start taking it and I came acorss a piece of info I thought would fit in here with regards to impacts on kids/babies:

Paroxetine (Paxil®)

A 13-month-old boy with prenatal exposure to paroxetine exhibited delayed global development. No other drugs had been taken by the mother; as well, no other obvious causative factors were identified.

A female infant born at 35 weeks' gestation had intraventricular and subarachnoid bleeding. The mother had been taking paroxetine from the 16th week of pregnancy until delivery. The baby recovered from the bleeding, but according to the physician permanent neurological damage may occur.

A 29-year-old woman, while taking paroxetine, experienced a miscarriage during the first trimester of pregnancy (at 8 weeks). No other drugs were taken concomitantly.

This was taken from: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/hpfb-dgpsa/tpd-dpt/adrv7n4_e.html

kristinajd
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 3/7/2005 5:51 PM (GMT -6)   
ANY SUGGESTIONS?? Hi Everyone. I'm just about 16 weeks pregnant. I was taking Paxil with the okay from my doc until I was 11 weeks pregnant. I had been on Paxil for almost 4 years for anxiety and OCD. My OB/GYN suggested that I take Buspar (catagorey B drug) instead of the Paxil Category C drug)so I started that a few weeks ago. Lately I've been feeling extremely irratible, cranky and depressed. I'm normally a bubbley, happy person. This is my first pregnancy so I don't know if I'm suppose to feel this way or if it has something to do with the med. switch. I'm starting to wonder if I should risk going back on the Paxil. some things I read say that the studies they have done have shown no real damage, but of course there are contradictions. I don't know what to do!

jgr
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 3/7/2005 9:54 PM (GMT -6)   
The symptoms you are describing are withdraw symptoms of paxil.  I too tried unsuccessfully to go off of paxil at about 7 weeks,I am now 11 weeks pregnant.  My doctor has said that it is okay for me to be on the paxil throughout pregnancy if that was the medication that worked for me.  I guess I am in the same boat, and don't know what the negative effects (if any at all) there are to taking this while pregnant.  I have been told that it is better to keep the anxiety at bay with the paxil than to go through the pregnancy a basket case.This is my second pregnany, and I did not need paxil until after my first pregnancy.  I feel for you, and hope this all works out for you and your baby.

Atlanta_sonya
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 10/19/2005 6:43 AM (GMT -6)   

I would advise any pregnant woman taking Paxil to talk to her physician in light of the FDA's new stance on Paxil.  I took it in the first trimester before I knew I was pregnant, and my son was born with a vascular problem.  Read about it at:

http://my.webmd.com/content/article/112/110504.htm

Don't panic - just be informed!
 
 

kfl1
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 10/25/2005 1:30 PM (GMT -6)   

I am sorry to hear about your son.  Is he okay now?

How many miligrams of Paxil did you take while pregnant?

I had major panic attacks in my last pregnancy and took paxil cr 12.5 from 5 months on.  My son was fine.

I am now pregnant again and am still taking 12.5 mg but I am so nervous about these new studies and taking the medicine in my first trimester.

 


Atlanta_sonya
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 10/25/2005 3:24 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi, there:
 
I believe I was on a 20 mg. dose for about the first eight weeks of my pregnancy.  My son was born with a malformed fourth ventricle in his brain, which led to a slow and steady build-up of cerebral fluid in his skull over the course of the years.  He was diagnosed last December with an arachnoid cyst (i.e., big pocket of fluid) that was displacing a large portion of his brain and required surgery in January (the day before his fifth birthday) to fenestrate the ventricle and alleviate the pressure.  We are having testing done for cognitive and motor impairment this week.
 
I do not tell you this to scare you!  He may be fine, although we are seeking professional help for some issues that he is having.  However, the only reason I stopped taking the Paxil when I was pregnant with him was because my pharmacist said there was not enough data to say whether or not Paxil is safe during pregnancy.  I thank God that I had the presence of mind to ask.
 
I have read that fetal cardio-vascular issues (the fourth ventricle is part of the vascular system) may result from taking Paxil in the first trimester.  I can't help but wonder if that wasn't at least part of the problem for my son.  We know the cyst was congenital, and that it developed very slowly over the course of the last five years - and probably throughout gestation.  Arachnoid cysts are not genetic or hereditary, meaning this is not likely to have been a condition he inherited from me or my husband.
 
So, by all means, do talk to your doctor!  There may be better alternatives for pregnant women, or your doctor may think your low dose is fine.
 
Hope this helps. 

MARYKO
New Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 11/2/2005 1:04 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm 11 weeks prenant and i've been on paxil almost 2 years..I went off of it as soon as i found out that i was
going to have a baby...But it was very hard so i started back on it i'm very scared for my baby??!!!Is there any test that i can take to find out if my babies ok???please help??

hopeful82
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 2433
   Posted 11/2/2005 4:29 PM (GMT -6)   
i don't think that there are any tests you can do while your baby is in your uterus, the only kind of "test" would be an ultrasound to look at the fetus in your womb, and that would only be able to show any physical abnormalities. because the FDA recently bumped up Paxil's pregnancy complication rating, i would really talk to your gyno/pcp about continuing the meds. they will help you decide if the benefit for you is greater than the risk to your baby.
this article may help you understand: http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/513612
to give you some insight into this article the odds ratio refers to risk, and an odds ratio of 2 or more signifies increased risk. the higher the odds ratio, the greater the risk. the odds ratio for smoking leading to lung cancer is about a 10 to give you some context.
again, this issue should really be addressed with your doctor.
ali
 
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"The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty." - Winston Churchill
 
 


Flopsie
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Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 1361
   Posted 11/2/2005 4:48 PM (GMT -6)   

Hi MaryKoch;

Welcome to Healing Well. The first thing I want you to do is try to calm down. I hope by the time you read this you have already talked to your doctor. He is the only one that can advise you what to take in your situation. Hopeful is correct in telling you to talk with your healthcare professional. The only test I am aware of is the Amniocentesis, and that is not done rountinely, only to determine genetic abnormalities. Please continue to post and update us as to what you have decided to do.

Good Luck,

flopsie


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DLM
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Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 3/23/2006 8:00 PM (GMT -6)   
mad  Hi! im new on here, I just found out of was Pregnant.  I am about 9-10 weeks pregnant, and I had been taking 30mg of Paxil....as soon as I found out of was Pregnant I called my OBGYN, and she told me to immediately STOP taking Paxil, and I did....im suffering awful withdrawls, including feeling like my body keeps jumping, but I WILL NOT go back on the paxil, or any other drug. I AM SO SCARED of what I could have done to my baby though, I went online to see why I was feeling like my body was jumping...and that is when I found out, that its a withdrawl symptom from the paxil, then I read on and found out that paxil is causing birth defects. especialy during the first Trimestor, and that is when I was taking it OMG! what did I do? did I Damage my baby???? Somebody please answer me, has anyone else went through this? is there baby O.K? please Please PLEASE Help me! I am so scared im crying as I type this!
 
Danica

Jan Marie
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Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 1663
   Posted 3/24/2006 5:03 AM (GMT -6)   
Hallo Danica. I just want to welcome you to HW. I am so sorry you are experiencing such horrible withdrawal symptoms. We have a group of very caring and supportive people here and I hope someone will be along to reassure you. Could you ask the doctor who prescribed the Paxil for you in the first place? I think you need professional advice over this, but of course to hear of other people going through the same experience will be comforting. Take care.

DLM
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 3/24/2006 7:37 PM (GMT -6)   
I have asked the Dr. that prescribed it, and I asked my OBGYN and they wont really give me any answers on what damage it probably has already done, or if it didnt do any damage......The OBGYN said she can tell me once I have my ultrasound, and just not to take the medication anymore, wich im absolutely not going to take it again, but mean while Im Extreamly scared that I already did damage!

Jan Marie
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Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 1663
   Posted 3/25/2006 11:19 AM (GMT -6)   
Of course you are going to be worried... that is natural. You have power over the situation now - you are no longer taking the medication. Eventually the withdrawal feelings will subside. Now try to relax..... I know that is easier said than done, but getting your blood pressure up and getting really stressed is not going to be good for either you or the baby. How long do you have to wait for your ultrasound?
Please keep us informed how you are doing. Take care of yourself... and that little one!

DLM
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Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 3/25/2006 5:04 PM (GMT -6)   
I have to wait 9 more weeks for the ultrasound : ( wich seems like FOREVER! Of course I will keep you all informed on whats going on : ) Thank you for the words of Incouragement!

Danica

Jan Marie
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Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 1663
   Posted 3/25/2006 6:11 PM (GMT -6)   
Oh dear.... nine weeks is a horribly long time for you. I am keeping everything crossed for you that all will be fine. If ever it gets too much, you know you can post here and receive support and encouragement. We have some great people on this site who really care.

jamie71
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Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 3/27/2006 2:20 AM (GMT -6)   
HI IM 35 WEEKS PREGNANT AND SLOWLY CAME OF PAXIL A MONTH AGO AT 31 WEEKS AND FEEL MUCH BETTER. I WAS CONVICED BY MY DOCTOR AND GENETIC COUSELOR THAT IT WOULD BE WORSE FOR MY BABYS HEALTH IF I WENT OFF SO I STAYED ON.I DECIDED TO GO AGIANST WHAT THEY SAID AND AM OFF. NOW PAXIL IS A CATEGORY D DRUG TAKING PAXIL IN THE FIRST TRIMESTER IS CONSIDERED THE WORST. HIGHER RISK FOR CONGENITAL MALFORMATIONS MOSTLY CARDIOVASCULAR. IM EXSTREMELY WORRIED about MY BABYS HEALTH NOT KNOWING IF EVERYTHING IS OK IS DRIVING ME CRAZY. BOTH OF MY SONOGRAMS WENT GOOD BUT STILL NOT REASURING. IM GOING TO TALK TO MY DOCTOR about HAVING A FETAL ECHOCARDIOGRAM IT CAN FIND ANYTHING WRONG WITH YOUR BABYS HEART WHILE STILL IN THE WOMB THAT WAY THEY CAN IMMEDIATLY TAKE ACTION ONCE YOU DELIEVER IF ANYTHING IS WRONG. SLOWLY GOING OF PAXIL IS THE BEST WAY I WENT FROM 20 TO 10 STAYED ON 10 FOR A WEEK THAN 5 FOR A WEEK THAN OFF I FELT LIKE MY BRAIN WAS GOING UP AND DOWN IN A ELEVATOR BUT I FEEL SO MUCH BETTER NOW. IF U CANT GO OFF SWITCH, ANYTHING IS BETTER THAN PAXIL.IM DUE MAY 2 ILL KEEP UPDATING ON HOW EVERYTHING IS GOING I HOPE THIS HELPED SOME PEOPLE   

Jan Marie
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Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 1663
   Posted 3/27/2006 7:33 AM (GMT -6)   
Hallo Jamie 71 and welcome to HW. I hope everything continues to go well for you and your pregnancy. Do let us know how you are doing. Would you mind not typing in capitals next time - it makes it tricky to read and it's as if you're shouting! Thanks a lot and take care of yourself and the little one.
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